We finally made it to Maine! Our travels have been taking us up the East coast since spring and we have reached the northeastern most state at last. The New England states are beautiful and having this opportunity to see them is amazing. The people in the state have been so friendly. Our neighbors were so generous, they gave us a large amount of firewood and offered us free use of their kayaks. We were not able to take advantage of the kayaks due to my wrist still being injured, but the free wood sure kept us warm. Our first stay in Maine was near Augusta because of course we had to go tour the capitol building. We found a nice place to stay right on a lake. The Augusta West Kampground had a small beach where the kids loved catching some craw-fish. They also enjoyed participating in the Saturday night sing along! Maine is a wonderful place to enjoy the outdoors.
The state house in Augusta is a very elegant building. It was designed by Charles Bulfinch, the same man that designed the state house in Boston and has some similarities in appearance. They also have a nice open green space across the street, similar to the Boston Commons although not as large, where you can walk around and see a few statues. The building itself is not large and they have kept the interior simple, but I think that is what gives it it’s elegance. Looking up into the dome you will not find any fancy paintings, but it is very grand and their color choice is perfect. The outer dome is made of copper with a gold statue adorning it. Inside the House and Senate chambers you will find the same simple elegance as throughout the rest of the building. We learned that Maine allows three of their Indian tribes to have members sit in the House during the session. This was the first state we have seen this. In the House the kids were also allowed to step up to the bench and strike the gavel which was fun for them. Part of the tour takes you out onto the balcony, the kids sat in the rocking chairs and we got a great view of the park across the street. Each capitol site we visit helps us to learn about the state. Maine is a fiscally frugal state that takes pride in it’s natural spaces.
We enjoyed having some camp time while we were there, but we decided to take a drive out to the coast and see what the Maine seashore was like. It was about an hour drive from where we were, but well worth going. We found a preserve called Marshall Field that was free to go to. It used to be an old army depot that was given over to the town. We almost had the beach to ourselves! There was hardly anyone there the whole time we were and we were free to explore. The kids were hunting for treasure which you can watch in this video. They found all kinds of cool stuff and we explored for hours. There were picnic tables up near the parking area where we ate our lunch and enjoyed the view. Afterward we walked down the beach as far as we could go hunting for treasures. When we were done we just sat in the sand for a while letting the kids play and relaxing to the sound of the waves.
When in Maine eat lobster right? Of course! Not far from the beach we found a place called Estes Lobster House and decided to give it a try. Even the kids wanted to try some. They had a great deal on two lobster and let you add a lobster to any meal for $9.99. Our daughter Journey did not care for it (eating something with eyes still on is not her thing), but the rest of us ate our fill. It was very good and the view was nice because we got to watch the sun setting on the ocean while we ate. The waiter even brought out a live lobster for the kids to hold after our meal. They each got to hold it and it was heavier than they expected, he also gave us some information about lobsters that we didn’t know. It was a nice place to enjoy our Maine lobster.
Maine is definitely one of the states I had always wanted to visit. I am not sure what drew me to this state, maybe because all the picture I ever saw were so beautiful and so different from the desert I grew up in. Whatever it was I am glad that I finally had the chance to visit because it is even more amazing than any picture could show. The best part about visiting a place is that you get to meet the people and they are really what make a place. Everyone we met here has been so nice and it has made for a great stay. I am looking forward to our next stop in the state and I am sure we will meet some more great people and see more beautiful sites. Feel free to comment or leave a reply about this article or about your favorite New England state. Thanks for reading and look for more to come about our visit in Maine.
Here are some more pictures and links to some of the places we visited:
Maine State House
Estes Lobster House
Augusta West Kampground